Michael Sam set to become first openly gay NFL player

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The NFL could soon have its firstly openly gay player after NFL draft prospect Michael Sam came out.

The Missouri defensive star made his sexuality public in articles published in the New York Times and OutSports this weekend.

He is thought to have come out to his teammates at Missouri earlier in the season.

The reigning SEC defensive player of the year enjoyed a hugely successful season with the Tigers, helping his team to win the AT&T Cotton Bowl against Oklahoma State University.

Missouri finished the season 12-2, and Sam was one of the stand-out players on a talented defensive roster.

He's not expected to be a top pick in the upcoming NFL draft, but is projected to go somewhere between the fifth and seventh round.

If selected, he would be the first openly gay player in the league. But some have expressed doubt as to whether his sexuality may now effect his draft stock.

A report in Sports Illustrated polled a number of NFL executives who questioned whether some teams may not draft Sam in light of his announcement.

Sam played defensive end in college, but could be utilised as a nickel pass rusher or outside linebacker in the NFL.

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